By Hennie De Beer
I’m a PC gamer, I always have been and I guess I always will be. Consoles, to me, have always been a big no no. They never appealed to me, the games on offer never really satisfied my curiosity, with the exception of a few titles, the Grand Theft Auto franchise being a perfect example. I always preferred to play my games on a computer screen than a television. It just wasn’t the same for me, and being an FPS and RTS fan, the controls never appealed to me either.
Being a PC gamer meant that I always had to upgrade my PC to be able to play the latest titles available. That started to irritate me . I mean, I would, for example, buy a graphics card today only to have it become obsolete within a year. But at the time I didn’t feel that there was any alternative, so I just pressed on.
That all changed when the new next generation consoles started to make an appearance. The graphic quality was out of this world, even on a normal television. My first experience on a next-gen console was playing Gears of War co-op on a friends Xbox 360. Man was I surprised, the controls were brilliant, the graphics ruled and the overall gameplay totally blew my mind. I started looking into getting one myself. I mean here was a manner in which to play almost all the latest games for at least the next five years, without having to spend additional sums of money on upgrading my system in order to play the game at full graphics. That was the single most important factor to me when I was considering purchasing a console. Money.
After mulling it over, and saving up I might add, I finally purchased myself a console , an Xbox 360. When I bought my Xbox, the war between HD-DVD and Blu-Ray was still being fought and no one knew exactly which format was going to win. I thought what the hell and bought a 360, plus the fact that at the time the PS3 was almost twice the price of a premium 360 also played a role.
Believe me I was over the moon. The machine ran graphics I only dreamed about on my pc, plus I was able to connect with my friends over LAN, something else that helped me in my decision to buy a console. Sure the controls were something I had to get used to , but that was a small price to pay for the experience I got in the games I played. I thought I would be set for a long time. Yeah right.
Since my purchase the whole Blu-Ray HD-DVD question has been settled with Blu-ray winning the day and the PS3 has nearly halved in price. Now I am thinking maybe I acted too hastily. Don’t get me wrong the 360 is a great console, but I just think that I should have waited a bit longer before making a final decision on whether or not to buy a console and which one to buy. I mean when you buy a 360 you buy a great next generation console, but when you buy a PS3, not only are you buying a next-gen console but you are also buying a Blu-Ray player too. Enough said.
Looking at it from a PC gamers perspective, both consoles look pretty much the same. Both promise next – gen graphics in high definition coupled with unparalleled gaming experiences to everyone willing to fork out the money to buy one. The controls do take getting used to, but once you’ve got the basics down the rest is just practice. Even a RTS title like C&C 3 plays great on a console. I found this to be quite surprising considering the fact that RTS titles seemed only playable if one had access to a keyboard and mouse setup as you would find on the PC.
Now I bought a 360 over a year ago and I am not disappointed, but if I knew then what I know now I would probably have waited for the price to drop and rather gotten myself a PS3, simply because it comes standard with a Blu-Ray player and I wouldn’t have to go and spend even more money to get a standalone player as is the case now.
In case you’re wondering, yes I did upgrade my PC again to stay ahead of the curve, and I do not regret it one little bit. I am after all first and foremost a PC gamer.
Last Updated: June 18, 2008